Help Desk Outsourcing

Problem:

The federal government needed a way to support over 400,000 active duty military users in the daily use of a web-based workflow application to support a multi-step finance and HR process. The manual process, which was being developed in a web-based workflow system, needed to be supported as well as users piloting the new development efforts needed support on new system functionality.

Challenge:

The process needing support was a complicated set of business rules which involved many individuals through multiple phases. Phases of support included scheduling resources, getting approval on resource allocation, recording transactions into the financial system, reconciling differences and supporting changes to the process. The support challenge was clear: provide a team, integrated with the continuous web-based development efforts, and support active duty personnel with manual processes in a globally distributed workforce. The major challenge was not just to develop a system to handle the complicated process, but also to develop a support system to handle the human aspects of this process. This included providing parallel support of the manual and automated processes, to include user communication and transition to a new and fully automated process. After the web-based processing was released, Help Desk support transitioned to providing technical troubleshooting and tracking incidents reported by the global users.

Solution:

The solution provided full-coverage to include help desk support for users in their standard business hours in a global environment. This included supporting manual processes while simultaneously supporting the custom built software application. Help desk teams were integrated with software development teams by implementing Agile methods. In doing so, the teams communicated and collaborated on the design and implementation of the solution. Brief daily stand up meetings were held to ensure constant communication, while reviews and retrospectives provided transparency and feedback on the process. Issues were logged in a centralized incident management system which was web-based and secure. This allowed accessibility to appropriate access controls, ease of incident management workflow, and reporting as needed.

Results:

The result of the solution was increased trust and confidence in support personnel, who were intimately knowledgeable of the product, process, and tools which were necessary for success.